International Family Planning Conference Scheduled, Population Nears 7 Billion
In anticipation of the world's population reaching 7 billion at the end of this month, approximately 2,000 policymakers and advocates will gather for the International Conference on Family Planning from November 29 to December 2 in Dakar, Senegal. The conference - sponsored by over 30 international organizations, including UNFPA, USAID, WHO, European Commission, World Bank and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation - seeks to gather experts and activists to address the unmet need for family planning. According to the Nigerian Tribune, "Worldwide 215 million women have an unmet need for family planning."
United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) Executive Director Babatunde Osotimehin stated, "A world of seven billion people is a distinctive moment in history. It represents an achievement, as well as an unprecedented challenge for the future of the planet and its inhabitants. It also presents a rare opportunity for a call-to-action to renew global commitment for a healthy and sustainable world."
Since 1950, the world's population has grown from 2.5 billion people to 7 billion, and since 1987, when the first World Population Day took place, the world's population has grown by approximately 40 percent. According to UNFPA, "all of this population growth - 97 of every 100 people - is occurring in less developed countries."